A new study offers helpful tips to help combat weight gain during menopause. This info is helpful for many of us who pack on a few extra pounds during this time of our life. Tips To combat Menopausal Weight gain It seems that every year thousands of women across the country suffer from menopausal symptoms. Some of the symptoms women most often complain about are hot flashes, insomnia, night sweating, headaches and decreased interest in sex as well as weight gain.
Researchers from the University of Pittsburg Medical Center examined 500 overweight women ages 50 to 70. The women were randomly assigned to either a nutritional and exercise counseling program or a weight-loss focused program. They were instructed to create a diary of what they ate for four years. Surveys were conducted at six months and then again at the four-year mark. Researcher Bethany Barone Gibbs, found that by making small changes, such as eating fewer desserts and drinking fewer sugar-sweetened beverages, there was a significant link to weight loss. Women, who consumed more fish, ate less at restaurants, ate fewer desserts and fried foods only demonstrated short-term weight loss at the six month mark. Additionally, women who consumed more fruits and vegetables, but less meat and cheese demonstrated long-term weight loss at the end of the four-year period, even though they did not show any at the six-month mark.
The researcher also acknowledged that the frequency of eating out or reducing fried food consumption did not show a direct link to long-term weight loss but eating more fruits and vegetables and eating less meat did lead to long-term results. Gibbs hopes this new information can assist older women to keep the pounds off in the future.
Weight loss in women going through menopause is important due to the change in metabolism and lifestyle. With simple changes in nutrition, weight gain does not have to occur. Although most women experience hormonal changes that affects weight distribution, it is the body's metabolism that causes weight gain. When muscle mass decreases, fat increases, which in turn reduces the body's metabolic rate. Dr. Jaques Moritz, director of gynecology at St. Luke's-Roosevelt Hospital Center advises women to watch their weight before menopause and then double the efforts during menopause. The study was published in the Journal of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics.